B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk/Black Press)

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver. (Photo: Tom Zytaruk/Black Press)

U.S. man sentenced for spitting on Vancouver immigration officer

Robert Dosson also convicted of obstructing officer at Aldergrove border crossing

A U.S. man has been sentenced to a six-month jail term, in part, for spitting on a immigration officer during an interview after he illegally entered Canada.

Justice Nathan Smith said the attack by Robert Dosson was a “particularly degrading and insulting form of assault” that carried “risks and fears of the transmission of disease.” The incident arose from circumstances that occurred on Nov. 26, 2017.

According to court documents, Dosson had previously been deported from Canada and, on that day, he showed up at the Aldergrove border crossing, seeking admission into Canada.

He was refused entry and told to return to the U.S. Instead, he physically resisted and had to be restrained and handcuffed, the documents state.

Dosson was then transported to the American side of the border, and he was later charged with obstructing an immigration officer in the performance of his duties.

He then showed up on Feb. 1 of this year at the Canada Border Services Agency in Vancouver, and had an interview with an immigration officer the following day. During that meeting, he spit in her face, and was subsequently charged with assault.

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Dosson was also charged with illegally entering Canada by presenting himself at the office in Vancouver without the necessary authorization.

In his written ruling, Smith said it appears that Dosson was of the opinion that border officials should have processed a refugee claim he was making.

But Dosson declined to make any submissions at his sentencing hearing or speak with a probation officer for a pre-sentence report.

“So other than the fact that Mr. Dosson is a citizen of the United States who has made multiple unsuccessful attempts to enter Canada, there is nothing I can say about the circumstances of the accused,” the judge said.

“… Mr. Dosson has clearly indicated a pattern of not respecting orders that remove him from Canada.”

Smith said Dosson’s belief that he should be admitted to Canada as a refugee “does not relieve him of his duty to respect and follows the rules and proper procedures around those applications.”

A jury at B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver found Dosson guilty of all three charges, and the judge sentenced him to a total of six months in prison. He was given 10 months’ credit of pre-trial custody, meaning he will serve no further jail time.

However, the judge noted that Dosson will likely remain in custody on an immigration hold while his refugee claim is being processed, pending the outcome of any bail application.